What is DSEAK?
A common cause of a clouded cornea is a damaged endothelial, or inside, layer of the cornea. The endothelial layer is one cell layer thick, and can be damaged easily by trauma, surgery, or by a condition called Fuch's Dystrophy, in which the cells die too quickly over time. If there are not enough endothelial cells, water may build up in the cornea. This causes the cornea to become cloudy, and there is a loss of vision.
DSAEK is a technique the replaces only the endothelial layer of the cornea. This allows surgeons to deal with the specific cause of a patient's vision loss. During the procedure, damaged cells are replaced by a thin back portion of a donor cornea. This procedure allows for better overall results, because your surgeon is only replacing the damaged area of the cornea. The surgeon will use an air bubble technique to keep new tissue in place, so that no stitches are required.
What to Expect?
On the day of your surgery, you should expect to arrive at the surgery center one our before your surgery for preparation. Do not eat anything after midnight the day before. You will begin pre-operative medications three days before your surgery, as instructed by your doctor. The procedure should take around an hour, after which you will lie down flat on your back so that the air can pussh up into the cornea, keeping the tissue in position. Once the new tissue sticks to the cornea, it should begin to function, clearing vision. Final results are obtained 1-6 months after surgery.